About 20 minutes east of Christchurch is New Brighton. Having parked at the South New Brighton Holiday Park for a few days and with Ferrari being settled in, I hopped on my e-bike and cycled along Marine Parade. All I could see from the road were dunes. On the other side of that though, is literally miles and miles of white sand and sea - very similar to Papamoa, just more untouched. There is a lot happening in this little place and I soon stumbled onto what I believe was The 2021 Southern Challenge run by Surf Lifesaving. I watched for a few minutes as teams of rowers exerted themselves to reach the beach first. Just a few kilometres further was the town centre with a little market, lovely big playground for kids, a library with coffee shop and the pier that stretches 300m into the sea. It was clear that this is where locals (and visitors) hang out over the weekends. The locals are very friendly, especially if you don't tell their dogs off for getting saliva all over your clothes and just pat them until their humans arrive. Oh, no... no leads if you think your dog is friendly - not on the beach anyway. On the way back to the holiday park I met a lady who did restrain her dog. It was kind of OK with people so it got a pat from me. Turns out it is an American Akita (my first guess would have been a Malamute).
Not long after my bike trip I received a message from Tauranga friends who were on their way back to Christchurch from Hanmer Springs. Being in the South Island for just the weekend I was very happy that they made time to come and visit! They haven't been to this side of Christchurch so off we went to see the town centre and pier. What a privilege to be able to share this with them!
The New Brighton pier is popular for walking, fishing and just sitting watching the ocean.
A lovely play area for children (of various ages).